Thanks for stopping by

July 25th, 2013

The Gluten Free Neighborhood was a project that I developed several years ago when being “gluten free” was just beginning…this time around.  I was diagnosed with Celiac Disease in 1946.

It has been a wonderful and interesting journey.  As you can see from the last demo post on the site, there’s not much going on in my gluten free world.  I am in the process of revising this and some of my other sites.  If you are interested in keeping up with the next curve you may contact me at kathydzasloff  at gmail (dot) com.

Crepes Demo in Portland,OR

July 30th, 2010

This Fall Kathy Dee will be demonstrating

several easy gluten free crepe recipes.

Where:  Montavilla Farmer’s Market

When:  October 17th, 2010  ~  10:00am

and check out

Farmer’s Feast blog

with Chef Kathryn Yeomans

to see what’s cooking at the Farmer’s Markets

Food Safety News publishes a Zasloff Opinion

May 2nd, 2010

On April 14th, Food Safety News published an article I wrote on Celiac Disease and Food Safety … connecting the dots…. Have a look at the new on-line news source as well as my opinion.  Thoughts and comments are welcome.

Gluten Free Cooking Meets Appetizing Cuisine; Love Affair Sparks.

September 22nd, 2009

They all said they’d never get together. Gluten-free food would always be tasteless. Now Kathy Dee Zasloff, founder of The Gluten Free Neighborhood, is proving the naysayers wrong. While the critics eat humble pie, Kathy Dee and crew are cooking up a mouthwatering menu developed by all three:


Figs and Kalamata Oilve Tapanade on crackers
Deviled Eggs
Camembert and caramelized onion stuffed chicken breast
Quinoa pilaf with roasted red and yellow peppers
Haricot verts with bacon and toasted walnuts
Raw Chocolate Mousse Pie with Raspberry Sauce – with nut crust

It’s all part of the “Gluten-Free Immersion,” a tasting event at AB Tech’s Asheville Campus, 6- 9pm, on September 29th.

“You’ll be laughing when you discover how easy it is to make delicious gluten-free meals at home. You don’t need exotic ingredients and it’s not hard to learn,” says Zasloff, “this event is for anyone who loves good food.”

A life long student and former A-B Tech culinary student, Kathy Dee Zasloff has gained support from Chefs Brandon Stepp and Ambra Lowenstein, both graduates of AB Tech’s Culinary Arts Program. Chefs Lowenstein and Stepp team up with Zasloff to present this year’s tasting event. The fee is $45 and registration is accepted through AB Tech’s Continuing Education program. Through demonstrations, discussion and tasting, participants will learn to prepare gluten-free appetizers and main menu items while enjoying a rollicking good time.

Chef Stepp, who was the Captain of the Hot Food Team for A-B Tech’s Culinary Competitions from 1997 to 1998, was recently diagnosed with Celiac Disease. Working for over 10 years as a Chef, he is in the process of making a career transition into Clinical Nutrition and Dietetics.  Chef Lowenstein runs her own catering business:  Ambrosia’s Delights, where she focuses on “The Art of Divine Nourishment.”

They all laughed at Christopher Columbus when he said the world was round. People laughed when Kathy Dee Zasloff claimed gluten-free cooking could be mouthwatering, appetizing cuisine. But Zasloff, Stepp, and Lowenstien are taking a bow and laughing now. You’ll have the last laugh when you taste the delicious victuals prepared for the “Gluten-Free Immersion” tasting event at AB Tech, Tuesday evening, September 29th,

A-B Tech Registration link


or  call Kathy Dee Zasloff at 828-348-4438

Classes Being Offered

August 13th, 2009

WhenAugust 27th, 2009, 6:30pm
:  Sur La Table, Portland OR
What:  Gluten Free Summer Dinner
Registration Information: Sur La Table calendar

When Sept 29th, 2009 – 6 to 9pm
Where: A-B Technical College, Asheville, NC
What: Gluten Free Immersion: A Gluten Free Tasting
Registration Information: A-B Tech website.  You have to scroll down to the “Gs”  (Gluten Free Immersion) for registration information on the A-B Tech website.

Celiac Disease and Food Safety

August 8th, 2009

….Connecting the Dots…

Why is it important for people with Celiac Disease and/or other auto-immune diseases to be concerned about food safety and why would it be useful to go see Food, Inc.?

Celiac Disease and Auto-immune Disorders

Over the last 65 years, Celiac Disease diagnosis has moved from a pediatric centered, symptomatic diagnosis, to people of all ages increasingly being diagnosed by various tests, scans and more thorough biopsies.  In addition, Celiac Disease has been incorporated into a larger category: autoimmune disorders/diseases. Although I wouldn’t want to jump to any rash collusions, I think that what this means is that we can say with a bit more certainty that our immune systems are severely and continually stressed, most likely jeopardized and/or compromised. Add to the fact that approximately 70% of our immune system is in our “gut”, it makes a person stop and wonder just HOW stressed and/or compromised our immune system is or will be, and what the additional health risks and consequences are of such continuous stressing.
Food Safety
While attending Culinary School, I learned that people with compromised and/or undeveloped immune systems are more likely to be at higher risk for foodborne illnesses. And as a health educator I already know how important it is for people with compromised and/or continually stressed immune systems to be careful what they eat and drink.

Since I started my culinary studies two years ago, incidences of food born illnesses have increased immeasurably.
Some occurrences we know about because they fly above the “news” radar:

and then there are those instances that fly below the “news” radar:

An interesting below the radar article is “Emulsifiers delay staling in gluten-free bread.” The on-line report talks about the various “items” being researched for use in making gluten free bread to extend its shelf life. Although the items/ingredients may be plant based, they are used to “preserve” the product. And these are elements that are NOT listed on the ingredients list. Like the significant bank crisis last year, this year our crisis is with our food: how it’s developed, protected, manufactured, distributed, imported and engineered.

Foodborne Illness
So, when you mix foodborne illnesses such as E.coli, Salmonella, Shigella, Hepatitis, and others, with an already compromised immune system, the risk of infection and illness becomes much greater than to the “healthier” public. According to Bill Marler, “Since the 2002 ConAgra e. coli 0157-H7 outbreak “millions more have been sickened and permanently disabled by food tainted with Salmonella, E. coli O157:H7, Listeria, Campylobacter, and other pathogens. Thousands have lost their lives.” If you don’t already know about Bill Marler and his work in food poisoning outbreaks and litigation, I strongly encourage you to read his blog. Marler is an accomplished, internationally known personal injury and products liability attorney.

Food, Inc.

Food, Inc., is a new documentary currently playing in a theater near you. Variety’s says: “With a constituency limited to anyone who eats, “Food, Inc.” is a civilized horror movie for the socially conscious, the nutritionally curious and the hungry. …it does for the supermarket what “Jaws’” did for the beach — marches straight into the dark side of cutthroat agri-business, corporatized meat and the greedy manipulation of both genetics and the law.” I encourage you to see it, but if you can’t get to see the movie for whatever reason, you can view an extensive interview by PBS ‘s David Brancaccio with David Brenner, director of Food, Inc. Access to the interview video is at the bottom of the page within an article about “The Veggie Libel Laws.” An interesting read, the on-line article says “Veggie Laws limit your right to talk freely about the food you eat.” One of my questions is how come there isn’t a law yet to limit or provide restrictions on the health claims of food products?
The Fragile Web
The first time I saw Food, Inc., I was overwhelmed. I thought I was already doing a lot and had a pretty solid understanding of food “stuff.”…but the movie has so much information, it has taken me 3 viewings to feel like I “get it” all. Living gluten free is a HUGE challenge, and now this….It felt like I was back at the beginning.

Gradually, as I’ve reflected on the film’s messages, I’ve begun to have even MORE questions about what is stressing/compromising our immune systems. I have believed for sometime now, although it hasn’t been “scientifically” proven yet, that gluten is not our only immune trigger. So now I am in even more of a dilemma about where to buy my food. I am fortunate that I can afford to shop in many places or that I live in a place where I can buy local. How do I reconcile what’s available in a conventional store with buying food and products that support my health and well-being? Why, as a consumer, do I have to choose?

And how fragile is the web that supports the commercial food system that feeds those people who can’t buy local, for whatever reason. Although it would seem as if it’s only conglomerates that would be affected, there are people that are and will be affected by the choices that others and I make. So, what are the unintended negative consequences of our choices?

Living in the World
I believe someplace in here it’s important to notice that we are all doing our very best. Whatever I’m doing, no matter how large or small I may think it is, I’m doing it. And when I can, I add a little extra effort in the food safety department.

We live at a time in history when there are many types of “crisis of faith.” There is a lot of information, much of it conflicting. It is becoming harder and harder to know which choice is which. Sometimes for me, it’s not even about which choice is right. Now, I balance my choices on this social activity called eating and my health. When I grew up these were not separate choices.

So, What To Do?
What can you do to care for yourself? Educate yourself. Eat less processed food. See Food, Inc. Buy local. Buy seasonal. Practice seed exchange if you garden. Read “Food Matters” by Mark Bittman. Educate yourself about what goes into your food and what affect it has on your immune system. By the way, do you know who owns the organic companies you buy your food from? Check it out.
Although the landmark Food Safety Bill HR 2749 finally passed the House on July 30, 2009, the law is no where near the President’s desk. You can track the happenings at La Vida Locavore.

Lately, I think we live in a pretty instant and fast paced world. Fixing the food safety system is a big job that can and must be changed.  It’s a brittle and rigid system that could use our care and stewardship. I believe that any change in a system, changes the whole.

Doing is an important part.

Dr. Alession Faisano’s article in Scientific American – Aug – ’09

July 25th, 2009

The August issue of Scientific American has an article on Celiac Disease. It’s worth getting the hard copy as it has wonderful illustrations. Also make sure you read the comments on the online version. I found them very intersting.

Happy Fathers Day

June 21st, 2009

My Dad, Ira B. Zasloff, the Chef

My Dad was the one who taught me to cook and also the parent who gave me my first cookbook:  “The Settlement Cook Book.”  It’s still a staple on my cookbook shelf.  And, I think I really got to cook with my Dad because he enlisted me as his sous chef after he had a massive coronary and majorly revamped our eating habits when I was about 12 years old, which would have been around 1957.

Dad was a health educator and a do it yourself-er, so, after his heart attack he took over lots of the cooking and kitchen experiences.  Although my Mom continued to cook, Dad was clearly in charge.  Mostly, he was a super cook, but there were some activities that he never did very well, like mince and fine chop.  He mostly did rough chop.  So, I think I got recruited as sous chef because he thought I could do better mincing and also because I did the dishes.  Now I can safely say, I still detest mincing and still do dishes.  Nonetheless, we managed to create wonderful dishes despite the “larger” chunks of ingredients. No one ever complained about the food and the plates were always clean.

Although his emphasis was on healthy food and lifestyle because of his heart attack, his specialty eventually became Chinese cuisine …and he really did make a mean steamed Chinese sea bass.   Although I now wonder what we did about Soy Sauce/sodium issues, all the food we made was pretty darn good and tasted Chinese-ee.  I still use many of his and my Mom’s recipes.  Eventually, she handled the hot and sour soup we made at home.

We spent MANY Saturdays making Egg Rolls…and we didn’t just make a dozen we made easily 3 dozen or so…usually the number of wrappers in a package I imagine. Then we froze them.  I was the only kid in school who brought egg rolls for lunch…and if the truth be told, my friends were always eager to trade some “cafeteria” food for home made egg rolls.  I could count on getting some great Mac and Cheese or Chicken Chow Mein for an egg roll or two.  We never ate Mac and Cheese after my Dad had his heart attack and although I do like cafeteria food, I don’t eat it anymore….well, mostly.

Because my Dad had to watch his sodium intake, to this day I have trouble remembering to use salt in my cooking, although It’s always on the table for guests to use.

My Dad was an inspiration in my life in many domains and most especially when I am in the kitchen.  Every time I pick up an onion to cut it, I still make sure to tuck my fingers back, just like my Dad taught me.

Happy Fathers Day, Dad!

Gluten Free Cooking Classes Schedule

April 13th, 2009

Welcome to our Spring – Summer class schedule

We are proud to offer our gluten free cooking classes at A-B Tech again.

To register you can go to the A-B Tech Link to registration

I want to make special note of  three events that we are offering.

Two Gluten Free Immersions – our tasting events

The first tasting is April 21st and we will offer an Asian Smorgasbord: Vietnamese, Chinese and Indian cuisines.  And they are all gluten free.

The second will be offered on May 19th.

We will be serving a Gluten Free Fine Dining experience.

And on May 11th and 18th we are proud to be collaborating with

Lavinia Plonka, author and Feldenkrais teacher, as we explore activities and recipes from her latest book: Playing in the Kitchen. We will sample “a smorgasbord of options for exploring our personal relationship to kitchen playtime.” With many delicious gluten-free options in this cookbook, we will create and relax by experiencing movement exercises for better use of self,

Cooking Classes Information

February 26th, 2009

Our current classes have just concluded.

We will be posting our new schedule very soon.

Thanks for visiting our site.

….stay tuned